Friday, June 26, 2015

Splash of Fun Water Park

 

If you are looking for a "Splash of Fun" this summer, you and your Frugal Family Travelers may want to consider packing the beach bag and heading to Mississippi to beat the southern heat. Located in Flint Creek State Park,  Splash of Fun Water Park has been around for quite a while but was previously known to locals as "Water Town".   However, those who plan a visit  here will not find the same park they remember from the past.   The owners describe the work being done to the park as a  "transformation".   The park retains all of the classic slides of the orignal (updated and refurbished) but when fully completed will  have additional slides as well as a lazy river, fully chlorinated water and miniture golf.  One of the unique features of the orignal park is the use of the water of the adjacent lake to supply water to the park.    The park is especially good for younger travelers as parents can see all slides and walkways from the bottom pool.  The park was staffed with many lifeguards and felt extremely well supervised.  Park staff also mentioned that weekdays have fewer visitors.  Our Frugal Family Travelers never had to stand in a line when we visited on a Monday afternoon!  We had a great day and know once the park is fully "transformed" it will provide even more excitement for your Frugal Family Travelers.  

Cost: 

Monday-Wednesday $10 over 42"

Thursday-Saturday $18.50 above 42" 

Thursday -Saturday  $13.50 under 42" 

Kids 3 and under Free

Sunday price is $9 with kids 3 and under free.  Spectators on Sundays are $4.50.

Tips:  No outside food or drink may be brought into the facility.   The park has a snack bar with a variety of things to eat as well as ice cream.    Consider packing a lunch and enjoying a picnic in one of the numerous picknic areas available in Flint Creek State Park.  You can go in and out of the water park at no charge.

Directions (Click address below to open Google Maps):  









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Disclaimer:
All content provided on Frugal Family Travelers blog is for informational purposes only. The owners of this blog make no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site.  The owners of Frugal Family Travelers blog do not share personal information with third-parties and are not responsible for the republishing of the content found on this blog on other Web sites or media without permission.  As with all travel, operating days, times, costs, etc., should be verified prior to departure.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The Presbytère in NOLA



Recently, Frugal Family Travelers took a trip to New Orleans. Our main purpose for visiting the city was to hear a concert at the St. Louis Cathedral.   The cathedral alone is a great reason to visit the city, especially for those who have never gazed upon the beautiful spires that tower over the landscape of the French Quarter.  However, our inner desire to explore and discover a new Frugal Family adventure led us to the Presbytère.  Adjacent to the cathedral, the Presbytère is part of the  Louisiana State Museum which also runs the 1850 House, Cabildo and other historic sites, some of which we have explored and shared on our blog. The Presbytère is home to two exhibits depicting two very different aspects of Louisiana history and culture.   On the bottom floor visitors are immersed in the story of hurricane Katrina.  This exhibit was especially engaging for our children who have heard all of the stories about Katrina from family and friends over the years but were too young to remember it.  With news footage and interactive exhibits, the children were able to see exactly what the City of New Orleans and surrounding parishes endured during those trying times. It also does a good job of showcasing the pride and resilience of the people who stayed and who are continuing their efforts to rebuild the city.  We brought our children, ages 11, 9 and 7 and found the exhibit to be very realistic without being too frightening for them.

On a lighter note, the second floor of the museum immerses visitors in the carnival traditions. From floats, costumes, historic throws, jewelry and artifacts, one can get lost in the evolution of Mardi Gras as we know it today. 

Our Frugal Family Travelers certainly enjoyed their visit! 

Cost:
Adults - $6;  Students, senior citizens, active military - $5 

Tips:

Follow the links below to discover other places nearby. Combine one of the following with your trip to the Presbytère for a full day of adventure!  Consider having some beignets at Cafe du Monde which is in walking distance of  the Presbytère  or relax in the nearby Latrobe Park (see pictures below). 

1850 House
Travel Itineraries by State:  See New Orleans Options

Directions:

Presbytère - Louisiana State Museum

















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Disclaimer:
All content provided on Frugal Family Travelers blog is for informational purposes only. The owners of this blog make no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site.  The owners of Frugal Family Travelers blog do not share personal information with third-parties and are not responsible for the republishing of the content found on this blog on other Web sites or media without permission.  As with all travel, operating days, times, costs, etc., should be verified prior to departure.












Saturday, April 11, 2015

Cheaha State Park in the Talladega National Forest

East of Birmingham, AL and nestled in the Talladega National Forest is a treasure worthy of any Frugal Family Traveler's attention.    With beautiful hiking trails, waterfalls, stunning scenic overlooks, a beautiful swimming pool and stone-hewn buildings (compliments of the Civilian Conversation Corp), Cheaha State Park does not disappoint!  Those who frequently read our blog, know how much we enjoy hiking, letterboxing/geocaching and waterfalls!  This Spring Break we wanted to experience all of this!  However, we could not spare the extra days in order to travel to a place like the Smoky Mountains.  Cheaha provided everything we were looking for and much more but the best part is we spent a lot less time traveling!  We left our home on a Sunday afternoon and returned late on a Tuesday evening.  By looking at the pictures below you will be amazed at all we were able to see and do in such a short amount of time. 

We spent our first afternoon in the park at the top of Mt. Cheaha which also happens to be the highest point in Alabama at 2407 feet high.  It is easily accessed by driving the loop trail which starts at the entrance to the park. Once atop the mountain, a tall stone tower was found!  It serves as an observation area for guests of the park.  Our Frugal Family Travelers loved climbing the winding staircase of the tower!   Being that the walls of the tower are so thick and made of stones, it was like being inside a cave!  The cold temperatures made the climb all the more exciting for our Frugal Family Travelers.  Once at the top, our time was spent relaxing and enjoying the beautiful scenery!  










Next we loaded up the car and from the same loop driving trail we accessed the Doug Ghee Accessible Trail to Bald Rock which is adjacent to the group lodge facility.  This trail is an amazing gentle sloping boardwalk which mirrors the original trail built by the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corp).   This is great for those traveling with those seeking a wheelchair accessible trail, a trail for someone with a physical condition which prohibits hiking, and little ones in strollers! This short 1/4 mile trail ends at the edge of a mountain with stunning views of the valley below.   The boardwalk also has stairs periodically along the path which allows access to the ground below for those wanting to explore further.   Our Frugal Family Travelers loved the views and the geocache we found hidden off the main boardwalk trail! After this we had a quick dinner and turned in for the night to reserve our strength for the next day of adventure!  










Our first adventure of day 2 was an amazing hike to Pulpit Rock!  Although a short hike (approximately 1/4 mile) it has a steep descent at the beginning.  It's well worth the effort though with views very similar to the ones you will see at Bald Rock!  







After our trip to Pulpit Rock we decided to explore several hiking trails to waterfalls outside of the state park in the adjacent Talladega National Forest.  The first of which was the Chinnabee Silent trail.  This beautiful three mile trail parallels the stream most of the time and provides a beautiful view of both Devils Falls and Cheaha Falls.  This challenging  hike is three miles in and then back out again with some narrow trails passages along steep cliffs.  You will know you are close to Cheaha Falls when you see the Cheaha Falls Shelter.    It is important to note that parking areas are provided at each end of the trail to provide easier access points to each of the falls for those not wanting to hike the full trail in and back out.   Prior to your hike, be sure you stop at the Cheaha State Park store, located at the entrance of the park for directions and for a trail map!!  Pack plenty of water, snacks and sunscreen.  Consider having a picnic lunch packed and ready when your return to the parking lot.  There is a nice picnic area next to the stream and our Frugal Family Travelers certainly enjoyed this respite after our six mile journey.   Note: A vaulted restroom is also located on site. 















The final waterfalls our Frugal Family Travelers visited was a series of falls called High Falls!  This is a very short hike (1/4 mile) which provides some beautiful views and excellent access to the water.  With a stream crossing over the rocks to the first falls and a trip up two sets of ladders to see the other sections of the falls, we were amazed!  Plan time in your trip to explore and relax as you hear the sound of the water cascading over the rocks!









Note:  This state park was truly a gem of a find with tent camping, areas for RVs, cabins, and a hotel type lodge, complete with a restaurant!  

Tips:  Make sure you stop by the store at Cheaha State Park for trail maps.  Pack plenty of water when hiking, wear sunscreen and bring ponchos in case you encounter an unexpected shower.

Directions:  


Cheaha State Park 2141 Bunker Loop Delta, AL 36258



Click on ALL underlined text for access to more information regarding each location above!


Disclaimer:
All content provided on Frugal Family Travelers blog is for informational purposes only. The owners of this blog make no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site.  The owners of Frugal Family Travelers blog do not share personal information with third-parties and are not responsible for the republishing of the content found on this blog on other Web sites or media without permission.  As with all travel, operating days, times, costs, etc., should be verified prior to departure.

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